The Killing Review: All Talk And No Action

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The world of The Killing must have a ban on sunlight and happiness.

It only ever seems to rain, and the characters are encumbered with current difficulties while being wracked with unfortunate pasts. Where is that hopeful light at the end of the tunnel?

Stephen Holder Picture

"Missing" maintained the dismal feeling via its heavy dose of character development. It was the Linden and Holder show, as the two detectives revealed their human and emotional sides with a mixture of foster homes and meth addiction.

In fact, the hour was so focused on Linden and Holder that no other major player - from the Larsen family to the Richmond camp - garnered any real screen time. The Rosie Larsen case was subjected to mere bookends for the episode.

Linden continued to unravel. The stress of the case had clearly been eating away at her, as the additional problems of her fiance and son piled themselves on top. She was far more shaky and agitated, but even more so after she learned thatJack was missing.

Which was understandable and even paralleled the Larsen family and their predicament. I could see why Linden became filled with frustration, sadness, confusion, and even guilt. The thought that perhaps she was simply a bad parent weighed heavily on her mind.

For a character so unnerving in demeanor, this episode was filled with her emotional range. Yes, Linden is human after all.

Holder took up a strong supportive role, giving Linden a sense of loyalty and reliability. He was there for her, even when he could have simply left. It's just sad that he wasn't able to illustrate that goodness for his own family. Ah, to be a tortured soul searching for redemption.

Of course, the partner connection was stronger than ever despite the missing child. Linden managed to crack a few comeback jokes and even, wait for it, a few smiles. Despite their various styles, these two are the perfect dysfunctional team. They just aren't of the wacky antics kind.

Unfortunately, the whole "Jack missing" storyline felt weak. It appeared more like a catalyst for the character development and even the reveal of Jack's real father. It was hard for me to buy his acting out as believable, especially when he has appeared more quiet than rebellious. Plus, Jack's references on the show have been so minuscule and in passing, that it didn't make sense to devote an entire episode around him.

Additionally, the pace of the show dropped even slower. A majority of the time was spent sitting and waiting. And waiting. And waiting.

While I appreciate the devotion to character and background detail, I don't want it to take away completely from the focus of the case. There needs to be a balance.

And with only two episodes left, I'm now slightly afraid of the story being neatly and quickly wrapped up. Bow included.

Hopefully, I'll be proven wrong and The Killing won't go out with a cliched whimper.


Editor Rating: 3.3 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 3.8 / 5.0 (38 Votes)

Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.


I liked this episode. Ihave been waiting for some information on the Background of Linden and Holder. This episode answered some of these questions, while giving you something to think about with Rosie's picture at the ATM.


I thought these two needed to bond and get to know each other better. This episode made me forget about the case and focus on the main characters. I was waiting to get to know them better and it was good to see them break down there walls that they put up. I personally like that they finally let's us know are main characters better.


@ sandra If you wanna see a neat little episode where everythings cleared up in one go with no major character development watch CSI. the point of getting to know Linden is so we can understand why she is so obsessed with the case but doesnt want to be a bad mother she just cant help it.


Are they able to solve the case in this season?


This was the worse episode ever. Not a character relating to the killing was shown. All about two detectives running around in the rain looking for a boy visiting his dad. If this continues, I will stop watching. One little thing at end, is Rosie alive and did she rob the ATM to gamble at casino and thats why her family don't have any money. What a lost time this hour.


Can't exactly say Jack's storyline was unnecessary. He wasn't a major character but somewhat important to Linden's character development. We've seen in past episodes how much she has been obsessed with this case and neglected her son and all her insecurities spill out in one go. This was an episode for those who felt Linden's character needed more exploring even though it didn't contribute to the case. Also, we are now in the final act of the Rosie Larsen murder. I see 2 episodes as more than enough after this. We see a trail being made:Sterling's info that led to Bennet, The taxi driver who led to Beloko, Blko's confession and Bennet's Quaran leading to the casino and the ATM showing that she was there. They've stuck gold this time


i understand the reviews about this being slow but it is important to remember that this is supposed to be 'real' time! not like csi were they get search warrants straight away. so linden and holder were gonna have to wait all day for a the search warrant for the casino so its a good chance for some character development.


I loved this episode. We finally got some real bonding for our favorite partners, to the point where they actually fought like an old married couple to just end up being all fine a meter or so of walk later, haha!
Ever since episode one I knew Linden wasn't going to move and that she and Holder are awesome together. I am really hoping for a second season to see more of their chemistry, and I am not referring at any romance at all. I think they have a connection like Eames and Goren in Law and Order CI. I don't think Jack is such a minor character. Yes, the main storyline is to find Rosie's killer but I think we can also say for sure that Linden's backstory is also a key point. Although I do admit I was craving for more information about Rosie, I'm still happy with this. On the other hand, I am also worrying about how they are going to solve this case in only two episodes. The pace of the show has always been slow and I am a little afraid they will speed things up. Still, I trust the writers and where they are taking us.


wow...surprised at the mediocre reviews. I thought the episode was riveting. So much so that I forgot about the other storylines until I saw next week's episode preview at the end.


I was disappointed with this episode; after the Adela revelation of last week, I liked that the plot was taking a whole new turn;I was anxiously awaiting more revelations with that plot twist,then it was barely utilized in this episode. I like character development, I just think it was out of place at this point in the storyline and should not have been the plot of almost the entire episode. I don't mean to sound callous, but I really wasn't invested in the Jack is missing storyline;it didn't hold much relevance for me and seemed more like a device to reveal character insight. If you saw the episode of Mad Men called "The Suitcase", that was a much better episode to show character development; wish this episode was of that same caliber. I also would have liked to hear more about Ahmed's condition and he wasn't even mentioned.

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